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Fitness Pains It's OK to Push Through

By Genevieve Cunningham

Working out is hard. It takes dedication and self-discipline and energy. And if you don't really love fitness, it's even harder. Add a few random workout pains on top of that, and getting your workout completed from beginning to end is no joke. But here's the thing: Not all pains mean you have to sit out. Sometimes the best thing to do is push through the pain and keep working! But how do you know the difference? If you need help distinguishing real pain from an appropriate challenge, take a look at these pains you can push through in your workout. 

Side Stitch

Side stitches happen when we're out of shape. It's usually a sharp pain in the side, and it gets worse if you exercise harder or faster. The good news is that a quick break will probably make the pain subside. Don't injure yourself or make the pain unbearable, but take your break and then get back into your workout slowly. The better your stamina gets, the less you'll experience these agonizing pains. 

Muscle Burn

An injury to the muscle is much different than a burn in the muscle. When you really use your muscles, it's normal to feel a burn, a challenge, a struggle. This means you're really working hard! Don't push through so much that your burn turns into an injury, but allow for a little bit of a challenge. Even though you'll feel a little sore afterward, your muscles will grow stronger and your body will gain stability.

When You Should Stop

Anytime a pain is excruciating, stop! Fitness pains happen, and it's OK to feel a little uncomfortable. But it's not OK to push through until you're injured. If it feels like you're going to seriously hurt yourself, stop. If it feels excessively awkward, stop. If it is accompanied by a sound -- such as a crack, pop, etc. -- stop. Be up for the challenge, but be smart! If you use caution in your workout, you can push through the pain and improve your body while still protecting it from injury.

Even though we wish workouts were easy, they're not. And they're not supposed to be! If you're feeling challenged, that's a good thing. Just use these tips to distinguish challenging yourself from real injury, and you'll be able to manage your health and improve your body at the same time.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Pasadena, Calif.

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